Is the Internet falling apart? Are we witnessing an unstoppable process of technical, governmental or commercial fragmentation? Are countries, regions or continents erecting digital walls for the purpose of control or national sovereignty? Are companies building walled gardens that render the Internet less open and accessible than it used to be? Or might we actually need barriers and protected areas for the purpose of data protection and copyright? On February 17th, we will address these and similar questions in an open debate about Internet fragmentation. The discussion will be launched by a short conversation between William Drake (University of Zurich) and Stefan Heumann (Stiftung Neue Verantwortung), which critically summarizes a much-debated study on Internet fragmentation that William Drake recently conducted for the World Economic Forum (WEF), together with Vint Cerf (Google) and Wolfgang Kleinwächter (University of Aarhus) (view the video of the issue briefing during the recent WEF meeting). All guests and participants are invited to discuss the results and recommendations of this study and to question the interest of economic actors and governments in the hot topic of Internet fragmentation. The discussion will be in English.
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